Breaking News

West Texas attorney sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for $22 million fraud, money laundering scheme

EL PASO, Texas — A former local attorney was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison in connection with a multi-million dollar wire fraud and money laundering scheme.

Special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) investigated this case.

Marco Antonio Delgado, aka Marco Delgado Licon, 51, was ordered to serve half of the imposed 10-year prison sentence consecutively to a 16-year prison term he is serving in a separate federal case.

A hearing in federal court to determine restitution in this case is set for Nov. 28.

On Sept. 21, 2016, jurors found Delgado guilty of wire fraud, money laundering and engaging in monetary transactions of criminally derived property. According to court documents and trial testimony, in January 2010, Delgado, as a legal representative of FGG Enterprises Inc. (FGG), signed a $121 million contract between FGG and the Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE), a Mexican-state-owned utility company. The contract was to acquire and install power turbines for the Agua Prieta II power plant in Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico.

Pursuant to the agreement, payments from CFE to FGG were to be deposited into an FGG bank account in El Paso, Texas. Evidence during trial revealed that Delgado, for his personal enrichment and without the consent of FGG which is the sole owner, submitted a fraudulent written request to CFE. This request caused the payments to FGG to instead be deposited in an account in the Turks and Caicos Island, where Delgado controlled the funds. As a result, the first two payments from CFE — one March 8, 2010, for $20 million, and one July 6, 2010, for $12 million — were deposited into the Turks and Caicos Islands account, instead of FGG’s.

Delgado subsequently diverted millions from the account in the Turks and Caicos Islands. He used the money for, among other things, the purchase of a residence in El Paso and a condominium in Taos, New Mexico.

The court also ordered the forfeiture of Delgado’s properties traceable to his illegal scheme, including his residence and furnishings in El Paso, a condominium in Taos, New Mexico, and more than $2 million in the Turks and Caicos bank account. Delgado has remained in federal custody since his arrest November 2012. Delgado was previously sentenced to 16 years in prison after a jury trial in October 2013 for conspiracy to launder up to $600 million in illegal drug proceeds.

No comments